Native American Mascots Are Racist Essay

Native American Mascots Are Racist Essay

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Teams in every sport, at every level of competition, have a mascot. It is the mascot that represents the competitive spirit and team identity, motivating players and fans alike. Does the symbol chosen have any impact on whether a team wins or loses? Unlikely. But the choice of a Native American mascot continues to ignite debate and controversy among athletes, fans and alumni, as well as those people who might otherwise be disinterested in sports. Utilizing an Indian mascot is nothing more than a veiled attempt at hate speech.

The dispute over whether Native American mascots should be used as a team symbol dates back to the 1970’s (Price 2). People differ on the basic issue, but there is a more important underlying principle. It is called freedom. Determining whether or not someone is harmed by a practice can reveal whether that practice can or should be morally justified. Wherein lies the truth about exercising the use of American Indian mascots? The reality is that they cannot be morally justified. The certainty is not ascertainable by way of any comparison to other similar phenomena. No such comparison can be made as none exits. Then, are not the only relevant voices those of the Indians themselves? If so, the truth regarding this imagery can only be discovered by conferring with the groups that are depicted. Only those portrayed should have a voice. Or at the very least, be heard louder and more clearly than those who are not mirrored in the representations.

Viewing this issue from a Utilitarian perspective, one reasons the justification that Native Americans convey to support the claim that Indian mascots pose harm need not themselves be obliged by those of alternative ethnicities. What Native Americans say about Ind...


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...ce. Wausau East Library, Wausau, WI. 16 Nov. 2008. .
Morrison, Rich. “Special Interview: Rich Morrison Speaks Out in Favor of Native American Sports Mascots.” Issues and Controversies on File. 29 Mar. 2002. Issues and Controversies. Facts on File. Wausau East Library. Wausau, WI. 10 Nov. 2008.
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“Native American Sports Mascots.” Issues and Controversies On File. 12 April. 2002. Issues and Controversies. Facts On File. Wausau East Library. Wausau, WI. 10 Nov. 2008.
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Price, S.L. “The Indian Wars.” Sports Illustrated 4 Mar. 2002: 1-5. SI.com. 16 Nov. 2008.

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Wieberg, Steve. “NCAA Ponders Future of Indian Nicknames.” USA Today 15 May. 2005. SIRS Researcher. SIRS Knowledge Source. Wausau East Library, Wausau, WI. 16 Nov. 2008.< http://www.sirs.com>.

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